Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Always has been. I’m not a big crowd kind of person and I’m not a cook so I’m lucky to have the holiday celebration at all.
My mother always insisted Thanksgiving be at her house. The reason, she said, was because my Dad wanted to cook the turkey. I don’t know if this is true or she just wanted an excuse to get out the good china.
Dad always complained about his turkey or his dressing. One or the other was always too dry, not enough flavor, or he cooked too much, he cooked to little. He kept a towel over his shoulder and most often cooked in his baggy casual pants and a t-shirt. The reason that is so funny is that Dad, a lawyer, thought suit and tie was the proper attire at all times except when bathing or doing yard work.
Mom, as I said, loved her pretty dishes. Even after they moved to the country and Dad died, Mom still loved to get out her pretties. I have china, which she bought me, somewhere in my kitchen cabinets. I never loved it. I’m a chintz and denim kind of person, always most comfortable in my favorite worn jeans and a red silk shirt. I respect my mother’s love of her table settings. It brought her true happiness to look at a beautifully set table and while some of us simple living folks could not find the sense in this, what we do, as a family, is support each other.
Dad’s turkey, Mom’s table setting. That is Thanksgiving to me.
Both of my parents are gone now. My middle sister has taken over the hosting of Thanksgiving. She brings out her china and her husband cooks the turkey. Sometimes I am the only extra. Sometimes, like this year, my other sister and her husband from Dallas will be there. My daughter and her husband who used to do Thanksgiving at his parents house are also coming. And, tentatively, my son and his three children are coming.
I don’t know how we will all fit in my sister’s house. Certainly some of us will be sitting Indian-style on the floor. What a wonderful feeling. As my first Thanksgiving after retiring, I am so delighted to be with my family. My heart is so full and I yearn for all the desserts that await me.